September 25, 2009

Now I'm on my own, vegan and poor...lets cook!

Dinner after the first days of class:

I baked some tofu and made this Curried Tofu Salad:
  • 1/2 cup soy mayonnaise
  • 2 1/2 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 pound firm tofu cut into chunks and baked
  • 2 cups chopped carrots
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • raisins
  • chopped apple would be good too
  • also maybe some sliced almonds next time!

Then I had leftovers from last night. This idea is from PETAs College Cookbook. I just made quinoa, added black beans, cumin, a jar of salsa, salt, pepper and a tomato from the garden...easy!

Quick Quinoa Salad

2 cups cooked quinoa
can of black beans
sprinkle of cumin
jar of salsa

add it all together!

I bought bulk amaranth, dried fruit, and oats from the natural food store. Tomorrow is the farmer's market where I'm planning on only bringing $10 and trying to stretch it. I'm also planning on baking bread to roti or something this weekend.

June 25, 2009

Food Inc...go see it before it's too late!

No really, it could be too late. This movie is crucial for everyone to see. It is basically a simplified version of the Omnivore's Dilemma, which I finished tonight, which I also highly recommend. This movie gave the basics of agribusiness such as GMOs, animal treatment, and discusses farming techniques. It concludes that we can all make a difference "three times a day" when we choose what we are eating. Even if you think you know it all, which you may, this has some great visuals and puts complex arguments into simple, easy to digest snippets. Go see it, and bring a friend!

Easy Shirataki

This is a quick, cheap and easy dish that will be great next fall when I'm once again a poor struggling college student. It was really good and healthy for being so simple.

1 package Shirataki Noodles
any veggies you have
soy sauce 
garlic powder

Microwave it and eat!

June 21, 2009

A little activism

Here is a snippet of the activism I took part in at UCSC. I got table tents with different facts about vegetarianism up in all the dining halls. I called the campaign "Veg for a Week". We also got over 200 people to go vegetarian for a week through tabling and having people sign a pact. I really enjoyed this, but want to do more. Any ideas??

June 20, 2009

Vegan Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

This recipe was great. I didn't have high expectations for vegan cookies after a bit of a fluke with some chocolate ones from veganomicon, but these were highly recommended on the web, and the praise was well deserved. Great texture, great taste, you'd never know they were vegan. They're from Vegweb and you don't need any fancy egg replacers or pureed tofu, just a good old banana. Here's the link:

Tuna Salad?

I've been wanting to make this for a long time now, and I finally did. And good thing I did, because this is a keeper. This was so cheap to make and healthy, and tasted even better than how I remember tuna salad. Definitely good for a poor vegan college student.
No-Tuna Salad
  • 1(15 oz.) can chick-peas, drained

  • 1/4 cup vegan mayo

  • 2.5 T. minced dill pickle (about 1 pickle-slice, give or take)

  • 1 green onion, chopped

  • 1 t. soy sauce

  • salt 'n pep
Put it in the food processor, and that's it!

May 1, 2009

Review: TJ's chickenless pulled chicken strips

These get an A+
-from TJ's
-good texture

April 30, 2009

Dining Hall Mocha!

Does the dining hall now have a full cafe?! no. However, all the ingredients for a soy latte or mocha are there!

Soy Mocha
1 part coffee
2 part soymilk
2 part chocolate soymilk

Soy Latte
1 part coffee 
4 part soymilk

For hot drink, put in the microwave. No, this wont steam the milk, but it will make it piping hot! For an iced mocha or latte hop on over to the soda machine and grab some ice.

March 10, 2009

that's just gross...

Really people...fried pigs tails...gross

March 5, 2009

BBQ Tofu Wrap at the dining hall

This was a nice surprise the other day at the dining hall. It was a BBQ Tofu Wrap with baked beans, tofu, BBQ sauce and coleslaw.

March 3, 2009

Vegan Hawaiian Pizza

This was so worth the trek through the biggest storm yet this year. I literally had the umbrella pulled from my grasp as I swam through the rain to the Porter Dining Hall. But the wet clothes and matted hair was well worth the Vegan Hawaiian Pizza. I don't know which brand of cheese they used, but it was reaaaaally good, like better than regualr pizza, seriously. 

February 22, 2009

BBQ sando

Quick and easy snack I make all the time inthe dining hall. Just bread with vegan mayo, BBQ sauce, and tofu. Sometimes a add tomatoes etc, but sometimes I just love it simple and BBQ-y.

Dining Hall Vegan Pizza...sooo worth a walk in the rain

I trekked through the most intense storm of my life across campus just to get some vegan pizza. And it was completely worth it. This stuff was so rich and tasty. Not sure what brand of cheese it was, but it was really good, had pineapples and a thick doughy crust. Delish!

February 17, 2009

Definitely worth a listen...(Michael Pollan)

I heard Michael Pollan the other day on NPR and definitely thought it was interesting and you might too! This interview is jam-packed with info on the agriculture industry.

Oh and here he is!


Smoothies in the D-Hall?

Yep, ya heard right! In one of the dining halls across campus on certain days of the week there's a smoothie bar. It has various fruit, some fresh, some frozen, yogurt, and juices. My boyfriend made this vegan one for me. I think this is what he said was in it:

apple, banana, mango, pineapple, mixed berries

Definitely a winner!

Wait, you had what with your cereal? A GOOD IDEA!

So I had an idea today as I pondered the excessively sugary, annoyingly colorful, or ridiculously bland cereal choices at the cereal station at the cereal bar in the dining hall today. So rice krispies were the least offensive of the cereals, but it is just so bland. Turning around to see what I could spice it up with I spotted the coffee mugs...get it? Yes I mixed coffee with my cereal and yes it was great. Try this if you hate boring cereal:

Krispy Mocha
rice krispies (or any bland-ass cereal for that matter)
vanilla soymilk
chocolate soymilk

make a bowl of cereal like normal, add a dash of chocolate soymilk (depending on if your a mocha or latte person) then add a little sugar and a splash of coffee. Slice on some bananas for texture and extra delish-iousness! SO GOOD!

February 11, 2009

Healthy Tangy Tri-bean Tacos

So the other day the salad bar had not one, not two, but three types of beans! Overwhelmed by my choices, I had to use all three. So what better way than tacos to enjoy the black, white and garbanzo beans. These tacos were good:

Taco shell
black beans
white beans
garbanzo beans
red peppers 
lemon juice

Pile everything onto a taco shell. Eat!

Now THESE are animal rights activists...

An epic report on the show "Sea Shepherds". Ship ramming for the whales, rock on.

February 8, 2009

Salad Bar Hawaiian BBQ Tofu

Easy and god when there's nothing vegan in the dining hall. Just greabbed some tofu from the salad bar, pineapple (even though it was really shitty pineapple), doused it in BBQ sauce and microwaved it. Voila! A good snack!

Veggie burger Taco Meat in the dining hall

Normally when the taco bar has vegan "meat" it's seitan, but today it was crunched up veggie burgers. At first it looked like a rip off, but when I put it in my health food nachos, it was super good. I'm gonna remember this next time I make tacos at home and run out of the taco tofu. A good sub no doubt.

Sweeeeet, Sour, and Vegan

If I could taste one type of meat ever again, it would have to be sweet and sour pork. I don't know what is is about that oily, MSG-laden goodness that I always loved as a little girl, but I know that's all I wanted when we went out to Chinese food. After becoming a vegetarian, I discovered sweet and sour wheat puffs (fried...puffs of wheat? I don't know how to describe them) at a local Chinese food restaurant which seemed to do the trick. But now I have the ultimate: Sweet and Sour Tofu and Vegetables and pineapple right here at the dining hall. It has the same sauce as the meat stuff but is vegan and somewhat healthy. 

Swiss chard in the salad bar??

Couldn't pass up this goodness when I ventured to the distant dining hall across campus. Fresh chard as a salad green. Super fresh, super pretty, super good for me! I'll be trekking over there more often if they keep that up. Just mixed it with some bell peppers and vinaigrette. 

January 27, 2009

Vegan Dining hall events of the week and convincing some meat eaters

These are vegan chile rellenos...basically bell peppers roasted with rice and seasonings and black beans...pretty fricken good. And below is vegan vegetable soup, which I was too full to try, but took a pic since it was lovely.
The other vegan events of the last few days was creating a facebook group convincing meat eaters to try being vegetarian for a week and vegetarians to go vegan for a week. Way more people joined than I thought so now I have multiple friends embarking on veganism and vegetarianism this week, super exciting. If you have a face book please ask your friends to join!

January 24, 2009

Ideas for Oreos?

So there's always this enticing ice cream sundae station that I pass by longingly every day. But I happened to notice that one of the bowls has crunched up Oreos....which are vegan...havent figured out something good to do with them yet but I'm thinking something involving soymilk...maybe bananas...any ideas?

January 22, 2009

Veg Club

So I haven't talked much about it, but at the beginning of the year I started a Vegetarians Club and then combined with an animal rights club called Banana Slugs for Animals, I hate the name and don't like promoting PETA, but other than that, it's a good place for me to start my life of vegan activism. Last quarter we did lots of tabling. My big projects though, not being the leafletting type, were to organize a movie night with a big projector and all where we watched Fast Food Nation, a good flick if you haven't seen it. It is not only entertaining (has a funny story line and great cast), but also can turn omnivores into herbivores, namely my ex-boyfriend, who continues to not eat meat. My other project was to get Tofurky to donate a bunch of deli slices right before Thanksgiving. We set up a table around lunchtime by the bookstore and gave out free samples. Not a singe person didn't like it, it was really nice to see some people be surprised by the good taste of meat alternatives. It was also fun hollering at people and giving out free stuff, I mean who doesn't like free stuff (actually surprisingly a lot of people don't, considering how many couldn't spare a second for some "CRUELTY FREE TURKEY!" or "FREE TURKEY ALTERNATIVE!" or even when we were desperate "FREE FOOD!") And plus I still have some leftover slices in my fridge!
This quarter, I'm heading in a different direction. I'm doing a campaign asking people to "Go Veg" for a week at our leafletting table. They sign a clipboard with their email, get a free veg starter kit and I send them a follow up email with recipes and info. Pretty excited. Also my friend Maggie and I are working on a sign asking kids to request cage-free eggs in their food at the dining halls (cage free is available upon request, but few know it is). And also to get info sheets on every table at the dining halls about the veg lifestyle (ie famous vegetarians, facts, etc).
Hoping for a fun and active quarter. Comment if you have any fin ideas for the club!

January 20, 2009

I just got HOOKED UP

So when I asked the dining hall manager for a new bottle of the vegan mayo that I had guilted the staff into purchasing about a month ago, he came with a few more surprises. After our conversation about getting some vegan cheese and meats in the sandwich bar, he had obviously taken me seriously as he told me to hold on for a sec and promptly returned with the items in the picture. Apparently he tried to order sliced fake meat for the sandwiches, but ended up with entire fake chickens..but what the heck! He got a really nice and tasty buttery spread made from almond oil and with a slight orange flavor and three types of cheese. Not only did he order this stuff for the dining hall, but let me take back everything pictured to "try out". Being vegan around here is kind of like being a princess. Well, not really and not always, but you get my drift. This was a great experience.

January 19, 2009

My favorite dining hall snack

If I happen to be hungry at any time other that the two prescribed meal times during the day, the dining hall experience is particularly frustrating. With french fries and rice crispies the stand out vegan options, I've found myself searching for a reliable, nourishing, and delicious snack... and that I have found. This masterpiece was the result of a few variations of peanut butter and banana sandwiches to produce the grand-daddy-of-'em-all. This creation consists of:

toasted wheat bread
sliced bananas
slices almonds
sprinkling of brown sugar
sprinkling of cinnamon
(and raisins are great, but not always available)

It's the perfect snack as the ingredients are almost always available and it is absolutely mouthwatering good, plus this creation seems to inspire others every time I eat it. More often than not,  someone at the table asks me for a bite and once asked me to make them the same thing, it often sparks a conversation too about how vegan food is good food.

January 15, 2009

Some great vegan surprises in the dining halls!

So here is some evidence of some serious positive change in the dining halls. I mean I thought I had it good with a salad bar and nightly tacos. But occasionally the usually dairy-laden dessert table greets me with the pleasant surprise of vegan sweets or a vegan soup! Here is a little collection of those surprises:

Vegan Berry Turnovers
these were so nice to see one moring, and even better to eat. I think I'm even going to ask for the recipe. The were flaky and delicious and the inside was good too, although a bit too sweet for me.

Vegan Cupcakes
Yep, that's right this is a tray of vegan cupcakes in a college dining hall. And good ones at that. The cake part was pretty good, but the frosting was reallly realllllly good and plus they were super cute.

Vegan Chili
I've seen this a couple times, and I make a bee line for the stuff when I spot "vegan" in the title from halfway across the floor. It has various beans, corn, tomatoes, onions and maybe some more. And it's goooood. In fact I don't think anyone would even realize it's meatless if it weren't for the sign that gives it away.

January 12, 2009

Back on campus...a dish!

So fall quarter has officially begun. Back to class, back to dorm life and back to the dining hall. After visiting the nutritionist at the end of last quarter about healthy vegan choices and a healthy vegan diet in the dining halls, I am excited to put the new info to work. She gave me an outline of serving sizes and such and basically I learned that I am actually alright with protein, but need some more starch. It's just tough when you love veggies like I do! Here was one of my first meals:

Kung Pao Taco Salad
From the taco bar I took a taco shell, black beans, rice, cilantro. Then I took some Kung Pao tofu (some apparently chinese sauce on tofu) and put it inside for some more protein. I topped it with bell peppers, tomatoes, frozen corn(literally!) , and olives from the salad bar. The salad is just mixed greens and a healthy handful of mushrooms. Oh and some cantaloupe. 

January 11, 2009


Some late New Years resolutions for the dining hall:

-use as much of the organic salad ingredients (the salad bar has a side with only organic ingredients)
-eat more protein!
-talk to the dining hall staff to put up a sign informing students that free-range eggs are available upon request.
-talk to dining hall staff to put up flyers at the tables promoting a vegetarian lifestyle.
-get vegan cheese and tofurkey slices (we have mayo and fake chicken now!).

January 6, 2009

Product Review: Celebration Roast

My mom bought me one of these bad boys the other day and thanks god she did. The Celebration Roast by Field Roast meat alternative company. It was filled with some squash apples and mushrooms, so obviously it was delicious. I had it for dinner, then on my sandwich the next day and then it was gone! And it only could have been one of my meat-consuming family members! Really though, it tasted so much less processed and salty than Tofurkey. It gets 5 stars for sure. A great alternative to traditional meat alternatives. Also I checked out their site ( and it looks like they make a ton of good stuff. Can't wait to try the Chipotle Corn Cutlet soon!

January 3, 2009

Since it was only a buck...

With the knowledge that Duncan Hines Baking mixes are vegan, and with the knowledge that they are on sale for just a buck at the supermarket, I somehow convinced myself it was a good idea to experiment with the hydrogenated-oil-laden-and-god-knows-what-else White Cake Mix. So here goes Deliciously Crappy Cake mix treats.

Deliciously Crappy Cake Mix Treats
1 box Duncan Hines White Cake mix
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1 cup water
1/3 cup oil
sprinkles (optional)

1. Heat oven to 350. Mix together everything but the tofutti.
2. Bake for 12-15 in a cupcake pan.
3. Let cool and top with tofutti.

January 2, 2009

Hot Cocoa-Nut...Hot Chocolate's rich tropical aunt!

I just stumbled upon a jewel of a hot chocolate recipe. In desperate need of a mug of cocoa the other night, I found myself with only a sip of soymilk left in the carton! Tragic? Not quite! I could have mixed in some water, but when I spotted some coconut milk left over from the sweet potatoes, I jumped on the opportunity to create! And good thing I did, because I will never be making hot cocoa the old school way again after I concocted this treat! It was soooo good, the coconut milk made it seem so rich and the flaked coconut added some fun texture, not to mention the flavor! Give this on a try!

Hot Cocoa-Nut (Coconut Hot Chocolate)


1 tbsp. cocoa powder (see note above)

2 tbsp. sugar

1/2 cup non-dairy milk

1/2 cup light coconut milk

1 tbs shredded coconut


In a large mug, mix together cocoa powder, sugar, and non-dairy milk.

Whisk together with a small fork until blended.

Add the rest of the coconut milk and microwave on high for one minute; stir.

Sprinkle shredded coconut on top, Enjoy!